Last week saw Birmingham take a decidedly Mediterranean turn as Amantia Restaurant welcomed the city’s foodies to their official launch party. I was one of very few lucky bloggers who managed to secure a place, so I headed down after work on a rainy Thursday evening.
Despite the typically British weather, the sunny Spanish vibes, fruity Sangria and wonderful welcome of Marta Retenaga and her family warmed everyone up instantly.
The interior of Amantia is stylish and sophisticated, with purple accent walls, dark wood and glossy white countertops, the staff were dressed immaculately with the ladies in traditional Spanish dress and it wasn’t long before the tapas began making the rounds.
Proud to import many of their ingredients directly from Spain, the proceedings started with rounds of chorizo, Iberico ham and manchego cheese with red pepper.
Followed closely by traditional tortilla and beautifully deep fried croquettas.
The Meatballs Amantia are the restaurant’s take on Albondigas which were delicious, and much bigger than just a mouthful sized canape! Their goats cheese and morcilla (black pudding) pastries were also an unexpected hit, as you can see below!
There was a short break while the ladies indulged the guests in an impromptu Spanish dancing performance which really brightened up the evening, before we were treated to some miniature samples of the main dishes.
We got to try tasters of the paella with chicken and chorizo and an amazing pork cheek stew called carrillada with melt in the mouth meat and fresh Mediterranean herbs.
There were even dessert samples on offer, with berry cheesecake and my favourite, Tiramisu.
All of the tapas dishes I tasted were fabulous, with the croquettas being a real standout dish for me, I just love them!
We were even given a little gift bag with Spanish olive oil, a tin of mejillones, Manchego cheese, bizcochos, a wine stopper and even a cute fan to take a little bit of Spain with us.
Well done to Marta and the team for putting on a fantastic event. I will certainly be back for the full experience soon!